HOMEBREW Digest #3046 Wed 02 June 1999

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		Digest Janitor: janitor@hbd.org
		Many thanks to the Observer & Eccentric Newspapers of 
		Livonia, Michigan for sponsoring the Homebrew Digest.
				URL: http://www.oeonline.com

  Response to Dave Burley (Harlan Bauer)
  stuff (Jim Liddil)
  re : Inexcusable ("Alan McKay")
  Brutal Bitter ("Michael Tucker")
  commercial vs homebrew, suggestions on how to use Siebels info., Cookin A sanke.. (Joe Rolfe)
  The George Report ("George De Piro")
  Siebel answer to dr pivo - subject: Rising temp in secondary (Radzan1000)
  Efficiency problems with new all-grain setup (beanish)
  converted keg kettle (beanish)
  correction (Vachom)
  celebrity deathmatch:  fix vs aj ("Bayer, Mark A")
  apology ("Bayer, Mark A")
  George Fix (Dave Burley)
  Second Pitch for High Gravity Brew ("John W. Thomasson")
  Fat corks into empty bottles (ThomasM923)
  HSA, Unfermentables in dextrin and crystal malts ("George De Piro")

* Beer is our obsession and we're late for therapy! * 2000 MCAB Qualifiers: Boneyard Brew-Off 6/12/99 * (http://www.uiuc.edu/ro/BUZZ/contest5.html); Buzz-Off! * Competition 6/26/99 (http://www.voicenet.com/~rpmattie/buzzoff) Send articles for __publication_only__ to post@hbd.org If your e-mail account is being deleted, please unsubscribe first!! To SUBSCRIBE or UNSUBSCRIBE send an e-mail message with the word "subscribe" or "unsubscribe" to request@hbd.org. **SUBSCRIBE AND UNSUBSCRIBE REQUESTS MUST BE SENT FROM THE E-MAIL ACCOUNT YOU WISH TO HAVE SUBSCRIBED OR UNSUBSCRIBED!!!** IF YOU HAVE SPAM-PROOFED your e-mail address, the autoresponder and the SUBSCRIBE/UNSUBSCRIBE commands will fail! Contact brewery at hbd.org for information regarding the "Cat's Meow" Back issues are available via: HTML from... http://hbd.org Anonymous ftp from... ftp://hbd.org/pub/hbd/digests ftp://ftp.stanford.edu/pub/clubs/homebrew/beer AFS users can find it under... /afs/ir.stanford.edu/ftp/pub/clubs/homebrew/beer COPYRIGHT for the Digest as a collection is currently held by hbd.org (Pat Babcock and Karl Lutzen). Digests in their entirity CANNOT be reprinted/reproduced without this entire header section unless EXPRESS written permission has been obtained from hbd.org. Digests CANNOT be reprinted or reproduced in any format for redistribution unless said redistribution is at absolutely NO COST to the consumer. COPYRIGHT for individual posts within each Digest is held by the author. Articles cannot be extracted from the Digest and reprinted/reproduced without the EXPRESS written permission of the author. The author and HBD must be attributed as author and source in any such reprint/reproduction. (Note: QUOTING of items originally appearing in the Digest in a subsequent Digest is exempt from the above. Home brew clubs NOT associated with organizations having a commercial interest in beer or brewing may republish articles in their newsletters and/or websites provided that the author and HBD are attributed. ASKING first is still a great courtesy...) JANITORS on duty: Pat Babcock and Karl Lutzen (janitor@hbd.org)
---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Tue, 01 Jun 1999 02:39:13 -0500 From: Harlan Bauer <blacksab at midwest.net> Subject: Response to Dave Burley Dave, You bring up some good points. Part of my reason for posting was to get some feedback on the procedure. I'm VERY aware of exactly how dangerous this can be, but what are the actual pressures that would cause an explosion? As long as I stay in the 15-psi range, I still feel that this procedure is relatively safe. I was a contractor in a previous life, and I look upon using this the same way I look at using a table-saw--NO drinking and pay attention ALL the time (yes, I still have all my fingers, and yes, I took ALL the safety guards off the saw, the damned things are dangerous). I can see this thing exploding if you turned the burner on full blast and went to sleep, but I'm not doing that. So, let me address a few of your other concerns: 1. Why do I need 10-gal sterile wort?--It allows me to easily make starters for 1-bbl of wort (I brew on a 7-bbl system). In a previous posting, I described a yeast propagator made from a budwizer keg with a 3-in stir-bar on the bottom. With this procedure, the entire propagator and the medium inside can be made sterile. 2. I was in slight error, a sanke keg is rated to 80-psi, not 60. Think for a moment how budwizer cleans their kegs. They esentailly nuke em--then sterilized with pressurized steam. I grant that they are NOT designed to be given external flame, but for the moment, I can live with that variable. In addition, I usually only use a keg once because I don't feel like cleaning it, and then send it back to budwizer to let them deal with it--I'm merely borrowing their equipment. 3. Pressure-relief valve. You've got me here--good point. This point has always bothered me. Not sure how to do it just yet. 4. As long as no more than 10-gal of wort is used (adequate headspace), and you keep the needle of the gage moving a bit (by varying the heat source), a clogging of the guage is unlikely (and would be noticable regardless), and thus, you can't get far off of 15-psi. Are you saying that this device is unsafe at THIS pressure/temperature? Does this ease your concern any? Harlan. BTW, does anyone know the bursting pressure of a sanke keg? Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 01 Jun 1999 08:08:18 -0400 From: Jim Liddil <jliddil at azcc.arizona.edu> Subject: stuff Steve Alexander wrote: >> my initial run-off is stunningly clear.[...] >> my clarity also improved dramatically when I got my >> MaltMill (I previously used a Corona). > Which may effect your definition of 'stunningly clear' vs murky as well. > At the HB level we have no objective way to compare runoff clarity. Oh but we do. It is called an Imhoff cone and has been discussed here before. See the archives. WRT to yeast storage and culture, I admit to being way anal about how things are done. It is a product of doing cell culture for 15+ years. Certainly we can all let things slide in homebrewing but with yeast culturing I can not let it go. It was great to have Siebel participate. And in my never ending jab fest let me point out that this was done on the HBD. The AOB/AHA could have organized something like this for it's members on thier web site, but they did not. Jim Liddil Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 01 Jun 1999 08:38:44 -0400 From: "Alan McKay" <amckay at nortelnetworks.com> Subject: re : Inexcusable AJ asks in 3045 for input on whether or not he deserved to bear the brunt of George's apparant frustration. FWIW I read over the post in question and could not find any "ranting". Then again, I also read over George's post from 3044 and I don't really think that he said much of anything that warrants an apology, either. Looks to me like a simple case of misunderstanding on both parts. And even then, not a serious case ... cheers, -Alan - -- Alan McKay OS Support amckay at nortelnetworks.com Small Site Integration 613-765-6843 (ESN 395) Nortel Networks Internal : http://zftzb00d/alanmckay/ External : http://www.bodensatz.com/ All opinions expressed are my own. Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 1999 09:06:38 -0400 From: "Michael Tucker" <mtucker at hesketh.com> Subject: Brutal Bitter Hi guys, I recently tried Rogue's Brutal Bitter at the Southeastern Microbrewer's conference. Great stuff. Trouble is, I can't get it here in Raleigh, NC. I also tried their Mocha Porter, also great stuff. Does anyone have a source in NC or a recipe for either? Thanks- - -- Michael R. Tucker Business Strategist hesketh.com/inc. mtucker at hesketh.com http://www.hesketh.com vox: 919.854.1570 fax: 919.854.1579 Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 01 Jun 1999 10:55:55 -0400 From: Joe Rolfe <rolfe at sky.sky.com> Subject: commercial vs homebrew, suggestions on how to use Siebels info., Cookin A sanke.. I think we can all agree that there are some major differences between these two ball parks. One that most see that causes alot of confusion and fustration: comparing the two. Commercial breweries have a time window to hit for maximum (or allowable) product flavor. In most cases the minute the beer leave the bulk tanks the brewery begins to destroy the beer. Homebrewers (esp bottle conditioning and big beer brewers) can wait for the beer to become "the best/or best in competition". For me after about day three/four it old - nice dark green beer;) Some one mentioned that homebrew can be subjected to worse handling than commercial. I agree, but I would bet money it is a rare case that a homebrewer would have total disregaurd for product like some distributors I know..a**holes;p.. Most tend to them like a newborn child. (ducking for cover) This leads (maybe) into the next point. You must temper what you learn from Siebels (or anyone for that matter). I saw this type of answer quite often - "do whatever works in your environment". The crew mostly at Siebels have come from rather large breweries. Most of the general process from a brewer can pertain and it is not a secret what is good to do and what is ""less good to do" during a brews life time. There are a few key points that can minimize its effects on the results. From my time a Siebel - rubbing elbows with lots of SR/Asst Brewmasters I think the "do what works" is the bottom line - maybe this is where I learned it and it stuck. on cooking of the sankey - to pressure cook... yep - I have done that - did not like it much, sure beats paying for a big pressure cooker. One thing I would do to the sankey fitting tho, on the part of the tap head that presses the ball and allow liquid out, grind off the "ears". I was mucking around with a way to put a 2in TC fitting on there but never got around to it. Would have made it eaier to attach "safties" to. I never had the valve/pressure controls clog up. You just have to watch it carefully. I opt'd for dumping hot wort in the keg instead, but YMMV. Anyway - things are sizzling here - just luv this bonding crap.... Joe Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 01 Jun 99 09:53:59 PDT From: "George De Piro" <gdepiro at fcc.net> Subject: The George Report Hi all, I haven't had a heck of a lot of time to read the HBD lately. I understand that I missed Siebel week. Damn! After months (OK, years), of hard work, the C.H. Evans Brewing Co. at the Albany Pump Station is now open for business! This endevour has been gobbling up all of my time the past few weeks, but I could not be happier (well, maybe I could be a bit happier, but this is close to Nirvana for me). We opened on May 25, with no advertising or other fanfare. This "soft opening" is common in the restaurant industry; it allows a period of somewhat quiet business during which the staff can become aclimated. Depite our best efforts to keep things quiet, we have been doing a fairly brisk trade. The beers in my opening lineup are being well received. They are, in order of popularity (week one sales): blonde ale, ESB, Hefeweizen (using Hubert Hangoffer's yeast), stout, honey wheat, and cocoa brown (yes, with real cocoa). The top three beers are all really close in sales, which is quite amazing to me. While it is no surprise that the blonde is the fastest mover, the heavily hopped ESB at # 2 amazes me. This is a beer that I almost sewered because it was tasting so rough early in its life. It was intended to be an IPA. Its tough childhood started on March 5 when I had to leave in the middle of the brew session due to a personal emergency. Due to some technical difficulties, the beer hit 76F during fermentation. This yielded a beer with a stupifying citrus character. Due to more technical difficulties (our refrigeration guy was a complete incompetent), the beer than lagered at 55-60F for a month before finally being cooled to near freezing. As the weeks passed, my opinion of this beer wavered, but always leaned toward wanting to dump it. The owner, Neil Evans, didn't think it was a great brew, but wanted to see how it would be if we just waited a little longer. So we waited. Late Saturday night, May 22, hours before our dress rehearsal (a private party), I walked up to the tank and said, "OK, beer. It's the sewer or the serving tank. Tell me what you are." I tasted it, and decided that while it was a crappy IPA, it wasn't too bad as an ESB. Into the tank it went! It's kind of annoying that this beer is so popular, because I will never be able to duplicate the conditions it was brewed under again! It's replacement is already maturing and will be ready to go on-line as soon as I free up a serving tank. I think it is a much better beer, but what do I know... My favorite of the six beers is the Hefeweizen. It is based on the recipe that I have used for years at home, with the only modification being that I use light Munich malt rather than Pils malt in order to make up for the fact that I cannot decoct at the brewpub. Hubert's yeast works really nicely in unitanks, yielding a beer very similar to the one that won at the MCAB this past February. My thanks to him, again. Being a pub brewer is a bit different from brewing at home our at a production brewery. I get to interect with the customers as they drink my beers, which is a lot of fun (and very educational). I also get to help in the kitchen when they are short-handed: Our evening dishwashers quit without notice last Thursday, so Neil and I got to do the dishes most of the evening (with the help of a really hard-working busboy named Carl). I always knew being a brewer involved a lot of custodial work, but I didn't quite expect that! What fun! If you are ever in the area of Albany, NY, stop by for a beer. I am there most of the time (literally), so chances are you will see me. You could always call first at the number below to be sure. (Was that too much of a commercial plug? Sorry if any take offense.) Have fun! George de Piro (Nyack, NY) Head Brewer, Albany Pump Station (518) 447-9000 Malted Barley Appreciation Society "Brooklyn's Best Homebrew Club" http://hbd.org/mbas Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 1999 13:14:58 EDT From: Radzan1000 at aol.com Subject: Siebel answer to dr pivo - subject: Rising temp in secondary So, people are using old underground cellars for fermenting beer just as they did in breweries before the invention of mechanical refrigeration. Have you guys forgotten what these brewers did to lengthen their brewing season into the times when outside temperatures were rising and getting quite warm? They went out to the rivers and lakes and cut ice into blocks and hauled this ice to these same underground cellars, packed the blocks in sawdust and burlap and moved the blocks very close together. The sawdust and burlap helped to insulate the ice and retard melting. These brewers extended their season quite substantially and some times, if their space was big enough and they had enough ice, they produced good beer year round. The first refrigeration used by breweries was for ice-making and the blocks of ice were hauled to these same cellars and used for the cooling. Refrigeration provided an unlimited amount of ice at any time and the brewer was no longer dependent on cold winters. Now the brewers realized that their "cellars" no longer had to be underground and multistory fermenting and storage facilities began to appear. The use of ice in breweries continued far into this century. Ice contributed to the growing popularity of lagers. My first brewery still had an operating ice house. Most of the ice produced was sold as a byproduct. But we did have one traditional product, an old nut-brown ale that we still produced in the traditional way. We had one "cellar" set aside that contained eight 200 barrel open top cypress wood fermenters. We packed this room with ice. This room was reserved for the old nut-brown. We skimmed three times discarding the first and third skims. When fermentation was complete the humid, cold, ice atmosphere allowed the ale to cool and mature slowly and gracefully. This was our premium ale. Our light ale was fermented in wooden tanks ranging in size from 100 to 450 barrels, but the cellars were cooled by ammonia refrigeration and the tanks were equipped with attemperators that contained circulating chilled brine. Unfortunately, the market for ale declined to a level at which it was no longer economically feasible to continue production and true ale disappeared from the commercial scene until the microbrewery renaissance. Anyone going to cut ice this winter? Higher temperatures, for the most part, cause reaction rates to accelerate. Yeast autolysis is more rapid. Spoilage bacteria grow faster. Oxidation is more rapid. One of the major brewers, Coors, has attempted to insure that their beer leaves the brewery, is shipped and stored at the distributor, shipped to the retailer and stored at the retailer ready for sale to the consumer at no higher a temperature than 4C. They have done much research and testing on this principle and are satisfied that such a position definitely retards the deterioration of the beer for six or more additional weeks. The other brewers agree but find that the problems of guaranteeing such a program throughout the world is impossible. That is one of the reasons that you have such short periods of time for the pull dates on national and international beers. Cold temperatures are necessary for the proper maturation and storage of beer. If you want to make the large quantities and want it to be preserved as long as possible, you are going to have to spend the money for more refrigeration or go out and cut ice. I promise; this is the end of my preaching. I just couldn't resist this one. Best wishes to all. Dave Radzanowski Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 1999 10:40:39 -0700 (PDT) From: beanish at blarg.net Subject: Efficiency problems with new all-grain setup I've made three batches with my new all-grain setup (10 Gallon Gott cooler, Phil's phalse bottom, Phil's sparge thingy) and have been getting poor efficiency. The first brew was the AHA milk stout; post-boil, I wound up with a little over 4 gallons of wort that was at about 1058-1060 (target was 1063 I believe). From my second and third batches, I'm guessing that I got somewhere in the neighborhood of 52% efficiency. These have all been 5 gallon batches using in the neighborhood of 10 lbs of grain. For my first batch, I added a couple of quarts of strike water, then alternated adding a quart of strike water and a quart of grain, mixing all the while. For my second and third batches, I fashioned a bb-snake (vinyl tubing filled with bb's, stoppered on both ends) and laid that on top of the outer edge of the phalse bottom; then I added half the strike water, all of the grain, stirred a bit, added the rest of the strike water, stirred. I've been aiming for mash temperatures in the 154-156 F range, and I think I've been hitting that ok (although I find it difficult to get good temperature measurements - seems like there's a lot of variability initially). I've been mashing for 60 minutes, then recirculating around 2 gallons of runoff before it starts to clear up very much. This is one part of the procedure that has me puzzled. If I add some boiling water to get it up to mash-out temperature, I'm sure I will lose that temp very quickly as I recirculate. Mashing out by infusing hot water doesn't make any sense after recirculation - mix it up and you ruin the filter bed that has just been set up. What I've been doing instead of a mashout is starting my sparge water fairly hot (180 F - although I imagine it loses a lot of heat running through vinyl tubing, into the sparge arm, and trickling down), and leaving the lid off of my sparge liquor kettle so that it cools down during the sparge. I've been taking about 45 minutes to an hour to sparge, aiming to keep the grain bed covered with 1/8" to 1/4" of sparge water (with some variations high and low, as I'm still getting accustomed to the system). The pH of my runoff has been in the 5.0 - 5.4 range, so I haven't worried about acidifying my sparge water. My water is very soft; I've been treating it with 1 tsp (~5 grams) gypsum and scant 1/4 tsp (~1 gram) table salt per 5 gallons. I'd appreciate comments and suggestions for what I can do to improve my efficiency; I'd be happy to just get up to 65-70%. I crush my grain using a mill at the homebrew shop I go to; I am going to discuss my efficiency with the fellow at the shop, I'm wondering if a poor crush might be part of the problem. - -- Jeremy York beanish at blarg.net Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 1999 11:10:25 -0700 (PDT) From: beanish at blarg.net Subject: converted keg kettle I recently picked up a used brew kettle, adapted from a keg. It's got what looks like a hot water heater or oven heating element installed in it. There's a pipe fitting welded into the side of the kettle, with the heating element inserted through and a box for the electronics and on/off switch mounted on the outside. The power cord is a 3-line 10 gauge terminated with a dryer plug (three prongs, with the neutral line going to an L-shaped prong). I built an 8' extension cord for the thing, so that I could run the cord from the garage into the laundry room and run off of my existing dryer outlet; my home-made extension cord is terminated in a ungrounded outlet box rated for 30 amps. I couldn't find any grounded outlet boxes of this style, else I would have used one of those. After some more thinking about it, I'm leery to use the thing anymore. If it really is running 30 amps ungrounded, if there were anything wrong it could be deadly. The setup was built by a fellow who seems pretty handy (and who works professionally in the brewing industry), but it's also been sitting unused for a couple of years. I'm fairly inclined to see if I can remove the heating element, put a pipe plug in its place, and use it on a propane burner instead. I used it for heating sparge water rather than as a brew kettle, because I was concerned about uneven heating and carmelization. It did ok for the sparge water, but I did find that the first 2-3 quarts of water out of it are hardly heated at all (since they are coming from beneath the heating element). After noticing that, I began stirring and recirculating until the outflow temp was what I wanted. Comments/warnings/whacks-about-the-head-for-being-so-foolish are solicited... - -- Jeremy York beanish at blarg.net Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 1999 14:29:15 -0500 From: Vachom <MVachow at newman.k12.la.us> Subject: correction I stand corrected. An alert reader made me aware of the fact that Henry Weinhard's brewery, now defunct, had a long life as a regional brewery before its acquisition by Stroh's and subsequent closing under Miller Brewing. I did a little research and discovered the following: From 1863 until 1979, the Blitz-Weinhard brewery in Portland, OR was a family-owned, regional brewery. The current brewery was built in 1906. In 1979, Blitz-Weinhard was purchased by Pabst. It was sold to G. Heileman in 1983. Stroh's acquired Heileman in 1996. This year, Stroh's went out of the beer business by selling some of its brands to Miller and some to Pabst. Under contract with Boston Beer Company, Stroh's used the Blitz-Weinhard brewery to brew all of the Sam Adams beers until Stroh's lost that contract to Pabst a few years later. Stroh's also brewed Mickey's and the Henry Weinhard beers there, and, in an effort to bring the Weinhard label into competition with the growing craft brew market, began brewing seasonal styles and a wider number of styles in general. The closing of the Blitz-Weinhard brewery in Portland has most to do with Miller, a Phillip Morris holding, trimming down its newest acquisition--137 years of Portland brewing history crushed by the juggernaut of American mega-business. In a recent Celebrator Beer News article, the writers mention speculation that Gambrinus (Corona, Moosehead, Bridgeport, Spoetzel, Pete's) might be interested in purchasing the Blitz-Weinhard brewery to brew Pete's Wicked Ales. These same writers also speculate that developers are practically coming out of their skins to transform the brewery into high-end, yuppie loft apartments and boutiques. I couldn't find much info on Weinhard's in its family-owned years, the vast majority of its existence. Is anyone writing the histories of these disappearing regional breweries? Perhaps an Oregonian could enlighten us on recent developments. Or rather, because this may not necessarily be an HBD topic, email me privately. Mike New Orleans, LA Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 1999 14:53:11 -0700 From: "Bayer, Mark A" <Mark.Bayer at JSF.Boeing.com> Subject: celebrity deathmatch: fix vs aj collective homebrew conscience_ i just finished re-reading aj delange's mad, paranoid, anal retentive attack on george fix's bt article (hbd 2999). as punishment, aj, you are hereby sentenced to continue to post mad, paranoid, anal retentive information in this forum. as for mr. fix, i believe his punishment should probably require a remedial reading class. at clemson, there should be plenty of sections available to fit his busy schedule. (btw, georgia tech rules.) sorry for the wasted bandwidth. brew hard, mark bayer stlmo Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 1999 15:04:03 -0700 From: "Bayer, Mark A" <Mark.Bayer at JSF.Boeing.com> Subject: apology collective homebrew conscience_ i am truly sorry for my mad, paranoid, anal retentive previous rant/vent to this forum. i don't know what came over me. my apologies to george fix and his future employer, clemson university. brew hard, mark bayer stlmo Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 1999 22:14:51 -0400 From: Dave Burley <Dave_Burley at compuserve.com> Subject: George Fix Brewsters; I was shocked to read George Fix's whining declaration of a clandestine moral "victory" over some judge in some miniscule contest. Frankly, I had expected more of someone who apparently has a good reputation and supposedly some sort of leadership role in this hobby. I can only say it struck me as extremely childish or even warped. I was really shocked to find that it was AJ deLange ( according to AJ) who was being attacked by George Fix apparently without proof of any misdoing. Some months ago, I too was subjected to personal invective delivered offline by George. After several exchanges between us, he ultimately sort of apologized at Laurie's request. I have never met him and really do not have the desire to do so, if he is in this sort of mood. Perhaps, some day when he has regained his perspective, I'm sure I would enjoy having a few beers with him and discussing homebrewing. >From my impersonal viewpoint, I can guess maybe he's working too hard getting promoted ( as often happens in business and the university ) and promoting himself such that he has lost his perspective ( which also happens in business and university). Perhaps for the moment he, and unlike others' opinions, has too high an appreciation for himself and his "contributions" to Home Brewing. In my experience, this is a temporary condition for a number of reasons Most often it is a loss of audience which reconstitutes perspective. My advice, George? Back off for a while, catch your breath. Stay Cool. I have often wondered how he got such a fine reputation. I can only hope it was not through intimidation, as one might suspect from my experience. In my opinion, compared to AlK's book, his are poorly documented and do not hold my attention. I wonder that the AHA, or whoever, continues to support the printing of these books. Those of you who have Principles of BS should carefully read the dustcover, especially the comment by the VP from Millers. And frankly, in my opinion, at least his recent contributions here on the HBD have been insignificant compared to A. J. de Lange's contributions. A.J.'s are always supported by documentation and experimentation. I know that lots of people will differ with me on this, and I presume our differences will be based on past contributions George might have made or his activities in the AHA, of which I know nothing. I 'm sure he must have done something, of which I am totally unaware, to gain his reputation and band of loyalists. It may simply be a magnetic personality which does not come through in his writings or here in the HBD. I am not interested in slamming anyone personally without reason and the HBD should not be the place. Unfortunately, George showed his fangs in public apparently to an HBD member who I happen to respect greatly for his contributions and style in the HBD. George's surprising attack on me, in my opinion, lends credibility to AJ's comments. For AJ's sake, I felt this issue needed to be addressed in public and their contributions compared. AJ wins hands down as far as I can see. Sadly, a forum or job is not always right all the time for every person. Perhaps the best thing is to sincerely wish George well in his new endeavors which, as he indicated, will take him away from the HBD. Good Luck, George! - ------------------------------------------------ Keep on Brewin' Dave Burley Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 01 Jun 1999 21:59:24 -0500 From: "John W. Thomasson" <jwtjr999 at flash.net> Subject: Second Pitch for High Gravity Brew Hi all, I have a slight problem with my second all grain Barleywine brewed on 4/17. With 12# Maris Otter, 10# Munich, 1# 40L Crystal and 1# flaked barley, the OG was 1.120 which dropped to 1.032 after a little over two weeks in primary. I pitched about 2 quarts of yogurt consistency Wyeast #1056 recovered from a previous ferment, aerated for 10 minutes with O2, then for an additional two hours with air. Needless to say, fermentation started very quickly and was the most vigorous I've seen yet. Unfortunately, I lost about two quarts of this wonderful wort in the process. :( There has been little activity in the secondary. By my calculations, this brew was approaching 12% ABV at racking, which leads me to think that alcohol toxicity is inhibiting further fermentation rather than pooped out yeast. To attain my goal of SG 1.020-1.025, I employed a 30 minute rest at 140F, and a 90 saccharification rest at 151F. This should be a highly fermentable wort. So it looks as though I will need to pitch more yeast. This wasn't necessary on my first BW because it finished at 1.018 (OG was 1.096; used Wyeast #2265... good stuff for BW!). Since I've never done a second pitch, I basically need to know everything. Obviously a yeast with a high alcohol tolerance. Recommendations? Eau de Vie (Wyeast #3347), dry Champagne yeast? Should I just build up a starter, decant the spent wort and pitch the solids? (I do know better than to aerate the beer again.) When should I pitch? What else should I have asked? BTW, the beer is in a 5 gallon cornie keg with an airlock fitted onto the gas in side. At 104 IBUs (according to ProMash), this beer should not be cloyingly sweet at FG 1.032. But, hop bitterness tends to decline/mellow after a year in the bottle. I prefer well attenuated beers and I'm a little bit afraid this will taste like bitter wort with a shot of everclear. I also have concerns about bottle carbonation. I really think that pitching additional yeast to finish up the remaining fermentables is the right thing to do, so I would really like to hear from other high gravity fiends before proceeding. TIA for any/all advice. Private email is fine, but why not share with the collective since traffic seems light following the Siebel answer session? Those folks are indeed a world class organization. Yours in high gravity brewing, John W. Thomasson, High Gravity Newbie The Seven Bucket Brewery Aledo, Texas The only thing that's more fun than all grain brewing, is *high gravity* all grain brewing... -me- Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 1 Jun 1999 23:58:13 EDT From: ThomasM923 at aol.com Subject: Fat corks into empty bottles In hbd #3044-7 Rob Hanson wrote: "Is there a way to reuse expanded champagne corks and wire cages from empty bottles in a new bottling? How could one with limited equipment compress the fat corks to fit back in an empty bottle?..." Although I may be mistaken, it seems that Mr. Eric Fouch and friend may have the proper equipment for this sort of task. Fred seems to possess quite the inventive streak during his time off... Apologies to all concerned, (still can't find that darn smiley face key) Thomas Murray Maplewood, NJ Return to table of contents
Date: Tue, 01 Jun 99 23:54:51 PDT From: "George De Piro" <gdepiro at fcc.net> Subject: HSA, Unfermentables in dextrin and crystal malts Hi all, Jeff Irvine (sorry Jeff, but you haven't earned the prestigious title you have given yourself) writes: "Apparently people who defend the "dreadful HSA" didn't, and my reporting of this waked not a small ammount of derision. George DePiro seemed most adament that "I must have done something wrong", and scrambled for imagined things that that could be." Why Jeff spends so much time deriding me in his posts is beyond me. Must be some sort of self esteem problem... Anyway, not to be misquoted, what I said then, and I will say now, is: 1. Jeff conducted triangle tests to determine that the HSA beer was the same as the non-HSA beer. Aside from only testing at one, relatively young time point, Jeff doesn't mention who made up his panel of tasters. Where they trained tasters? It makes a big difference. Since Jeff conveniently scorns homebrew contests, the world has no way of knowing if is beer is actually any good. The quality of a brew is usually correlated to the quality of the brewer's palate. I would trust the advice of a palate I know and respect much more than that of someone I have never met and whose beer I have never tasted (nor ever heard of anybody else tasting). 2. I was at Siebel over 1.5 years ago and posted way back then about their belief that the danger of HSA is overrated. Rob Moline coauthored the post. 3. While the danger of HSA may be overrated, it is also one of the easiest things to avoid, even in a home brewery. When presented with the option to either spray hot wort through the air or move it quietly, the answer should be obvious, and not take any extra effort! - ------------------------------------------------------ There was a question about the lack of fermentability of dextrin malts. Dave Burley talks about using them late in the mash to ensure that the dextrins are not broken down during the mash. This is unnecessary. Mort O'Sullivan, in my opinion one of the brightest stars to ever post to the HBD, wrote about this topic at some point last year. To summarize: Dextrin and crystal malts are made by kilning wet malt (about 45% moisture) at saccharification temperature. Because the malt is not milled and the water to malt ratio is much lower than in the mash tun, the amylases can only act on a relatively small percentage of the starches in the grain. The reducing sugars that are formed undergo Maillard reactions to become furans, melanoidins, etc. and are unfermentable, but a significant amount of starch remains. What is its fate, and why does it not yield fermentable sugar in the mash tun? Starch molecules in barley are about 25% amylose and 75% amylopectin. Due to the limited enzyme mobility in the unground, low-water malt, the amylopectin is preferentially degraded because its complex shape entraps amylases on the surface of the molecules. The much longer, straight-chained amyose molecules are solubilized, but remain relatively unscathed. Later, during the higher temperature kilning and subsequent cooling, these amylose molcules recrystalize in a process known as "retrogradation." For reasons not yet known to science, these recrystalized starch molecules are very resistant to enzymatic hydrolysis, and thus do not yield fermentable sugars in the mash tun. It is well known, by both researchers and common brewing experience, that high-kilned malts produce less fermentable worts than pale malts using the same mash schedule. A wort made from 100% dark Munich malt will not be as fermentable as one made from 100% pils malt, even if mashed in the same manner. Have fun! George de Piro (Nyack, NY) Head Brewer, Albany Pump Station (OK, so I'm also the only brewer...) Malted Barley Appreciation Society "Brooklyn's Best Homebrew Club" http://hbd.org/mbas Return to table of contents
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